On Tuesday 9th June I had a gig in Sheffield, playing with Sheffield’s Rep Orchestra conducted by a good friend of mine – George Morton.
The ‘rep’ we were playing was Gustav Holst’s The Planets as part of Sheffield’s ‘DocFest’ or Documentary Festival.
The concert was in Sheffield’s Crucible Theatre, which was exciting in itself – we used to take school trips there to see plays from time to time. Í’ve played The Planets in Sheffield so many times in the past few years, but this was definitely a special gig.
Behind the orchestra was a big screen, showing visualisations and photographs of outer space, the planets, and different types of star. It was completely fascinating. This visualisation in particular just blew me away.
As is becoming my habit, I arrived in Sheffield an hour and a half early so I grabbed a quick coffee and a pain au chocolat in the nearby cafe Marmadukes – it’s a small but lovely place just around the corner from the theatre. The staff were great and talked me through their extensive choice of coffees. I sat for a while and caught up on some reading (Needful Things by Stephen King) before heading back to the theatre to set up and tune.
We rehearsed for just over an hour then had some time to get ready for the 8.30pm concert. Quite a late start but I heard there were over five hundred people there. There are two harp parts for the Holst and the other harpist was the lovely Alley York:
The performance went really well, we even got a little standing ovation, but as it was a late start it was well after midnight when I finally got home to Manchester. Long day but so worth it.